This object is a poly-chrome, three-dimensional, woodcarving depicting a male slave trader and a female slave standing on an elongated oval platform. Both figures are standing upright and facing the same direction with the male figure behind the female figure. The male figure is significantly larger than the female figure. He has short hair and is wearing a dark three-piece suit, belt with belt buckle, white collared shirt and a dark neck tie. There are two, small white objects in his left and right breast coat pockets. His proper right hand has a drilled hole through the fist. His proper left hand is slightly forward and he is holding a length of cord connected to the female figure. The cord ties her hands behind her back and wraps around her neck in a noose. The female figure is bald, wearing light colored earrings and is nude with the exception of a light colored breechcloth and four strings (two dark strings, two light strings) of glass beads around the waist. A piece of light cloth has been tied around the female figure’s upper torso.
A string of cowrie shells. There are sixty (60) tan and yellow colored cowrie shells on a string composed of multiple natural-colored strands twisted together. The shells do not create a distinct pattern and they are oriented on the string in varying positions.
The Royal Africa Company, chartered in 1672 by the English government, engaged in trade in gold and enslaved men, women and children in western Africa. This stock certificate demonstrates the investment in the company that provided the greatest number of enslaved persons to the British colonies.
Stock option certificate from the Royal African Company. The document is handwritten in ink on one page of a bifolio sheet and discusses the transfer of stock shares from Champion Ashby to Thomas Louws (possibly Lowes or Loews). The document begins: [In consideration of Twenty guineys received of Thomas Louws of London XXX I Champion Ashby of London Esquire Do oblige my self [sic] my heires [sic] Execs & Adms to transferr or cause to be ~/~ transferred unto the said Thomas Louws ~ his Execs Adms or ~ assignes Two hundred pounds of the present credit in the Joint Stock of the Royal Affrican [sic] Company of England ...] At the bottom right is the signature and red wax seal of Champion Ashby. At the bottom left is
[Sealed & Delivered / In the presence of / John Holker / Wm Thorowgood]. On the verso, at the top horizontal center is written: From 3d Aug / to 3d Sept } 1691 / Champion Ashby, Esq. / obligacon [sic] to Tho Loews to deliver / him 200 Afr. Stock paying 200 in 1 month / Void]. There is a circular watermark just below and to the right of "Void."